Homemade Baked Beans (Instant Pot )
These homemade baked beans made in an instant pot are packed with deep, rich flavor and take a third of the time as traditional cooking methods. They're a perfect make-ahead side, buffet, BBQ or potluck dish.
Servings (change as needed): 10
- 2 cups dry navy beans, Note 1 about 1 pound/454 grams.
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt for soaking beans
- Optional: 5-6 slices thick cut bacon, chopped (omit for vegetarian version)
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 teaspoon minced garlic (1/2 tsp garlic powder)
- 3 cup water
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/3 cup ketchup
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
- 1 1/4 teaspoon dried mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
PREPARE BEANS: Rinse dry beans and add to pot with salt. Add water to cover 2 inches/5 cm above beans. For QUICK SOAK method: Bring to boil, then boil for two minutes. Remove from heat and let set covered for 1 hour. For SLOW SOAK method: Soak for 3 hours or overnight. Drain and rinse beans in a colander after either soak method. You can also use canned beans (Note 1) which cuts the cooking time significantly.
GATHER INGREDIENTS FOR INSTANT POT: Put all sauce ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.
SAUTÉ AROMATICS AND BACON (if using): Choose Sauté function on Instant Pot (IP) or BROWNING on Pressure Cooker and let it heat up. Add onions and bacon (if using) to the inner pot. Sauté for about 5 minutes stirring occasionally until onions are translucent and bacon is beginning to brown. Don't drain the bacon grease. Add a few tablespoons water, scraping up any brown bits from the bottom of the pot. Continue cooking until the water has evaporated. Add garlic and sauté another 30 seconds.
PRESSURE COOK: Add beans and all sauce ingredients along with the water to the Instant Pot. Stir. Lock lid and set spout to the sealing position (or close pressure valve). Choose High Pressure for 45-50 minutes. (Note 2). Or cook 25-30 minutes if using canned beans. When machine beeps, allow natural pressure release for 15 minutes, then turn to Venting to allow release of remaining pressure. Open lid. Stir in salt. Taste for tenderness and sweetness. Add more molasses or maple syrup if desired. If beans are not soft enough, lock on lid and pressure cook on high pressure for another 10 minutes. To further thicken the sauce, cook the beans using the sauté function for a few minutes. But note they will thicken on standing or in the fridge.
Nutrition values are estimates and include bacon.
- Bean options:
- You can skip soaking the beans and use plain canned navy beans. You will need 4-5 cups/1 kg. This will save the soaking time and reduce cook time to 25-30 minutes.
- Instead of white navy beans, you can substitute with pinto beans, white kidney beans (also called canellini beans) or Great Northern beans.
- For softer beans: pressure cook them for a bit longer. Older beans will take longer to cook.
- For a thicker sauce. If you still want to thicken sauce a bit more (if you are serving them immediately for example), choose SAUTÉ function on the instant pot and cook while stirring for 3-4 minutes or until desired consistency.
- To make ahead/store: Store the cooked beans in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. Reheat them on the stovetop with a bit of extra water. Or in a covered dish in the oven at 350F/177C for about 30 minutes. The bean can also be frozen for up to 3 months.
- Build or adjust flavors
- Adjust the sweetness with more or less molasses and maple syrup.
- For more tang, increase the dried mustard or add a bit of Dijon mustard.
- Add extra smoky flavor with a few drops of liquid smoke or smoked paprika.
- Add heat with a pinch of red pepper flakes or chilli powder.
- Sauté a bell pepper with the onion and bacon.
- Add sausage or ground beef instead of or in addition to the bacon.
- Vegetarian version - eliminate the bacon.
- Lower calorie version: Skip the bacon or use lower fat turkey bacon. And reduce the brown sugar, maple syrup and molasses a bit. You can also substitute the brown sugar with a stevia brown sugar mix found in some grocery stores.
Calories: 181kcal | Carbohydrates: 30g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 7mg | Sodium: 985mg | Potassium: 372mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 19g | Vitamin A: 47IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 2mg